2014 Archives July/Aug./Sept./Oct./1 Nov

Email Us

Archives

 

Week of  26 October – 1 November 1 2014

 

I hate grass but…

During the growing season grass needs to be cut on a regular basis. That was part of my inspiration for converting our yard in to a mini-farm.

When David moved the raised bed which was next to the greenhouse, this past January, we had to decide what would take its place. Before the raised was built, this area was used for our container garden. The two things I did not like about our former container garden was plastic and mud. Plastic was put down to keep the roots of the plants in the pots from growing into the ground this in turn kept the ground damp and muddy.

jf_102614_breakfast

We decided to sow grass in this small area and use it for entertaining instead of growing. On Sunday the weather was so beautiful that we had our breakfast outside and enjoyed our small bit of greensward.

 

 

 

fj_102614_doorway

David framed in the doorways for the tunnels and I helped cover the tunnels with plastic.

fj_102614_doorway2

 

fj_102614_rye

 The winter rye and daikon radish in the pepper bed are doing well even the mix we planted past the recommend sowing time. When the rye and radish get bigger we will mulch the area between the rye mix and the raised beds with leaves.

fj_week_101614_strawberries

After I weeded the strawberry patch and fill in holes with runners David sowed winter rye.

Week of  19 October – 25 October 2014

fj_101914_tunnels2

David’s main project this week was the construction of our “Just Wright tunnels”.

I harvested and pulled up the rest of our sweet pepper plants. Although the weather was still conducive to their continued production we needed to get a cover crop on that area. It has been a very good season for peppers but now it is time to fret about our fall and winter crops.

David also sowed winter rye in his October bean row and between my “What Not’s”.

fj_101914_rye2

10-19-14

 

fj_101914_rye

10-25-14

We finished with Catawba this week. David picked the October beans one more time then cut them down. It was too wet to sow rye in this row but the sweet potato row was seeded.

 

 

Week of  12 October – 18 October 2014

fj_101214_tomatoes

The deer found a way past all of our barriers, trampled our cover crops and devoured most of my blueberry kumquat tomatoes. These tomatoes apparently are very hardy; they survived late blight and cold weather but unfortunately they are not deer proof. David believes he has found the deer’s point of entry and will construct more deterrents to their access.

 

 

fj_101214_tunnel

 

 

 

David ordered the plastic for our just Wright tunnels and began to assemble a frame, for one of them, over bed c.

fj_101214_david

David grading potatoes for market

 

 

 

 

 

 

Our market season is winding down. We have only two more Grandin Village Community Markets Oct 25th and Nov 1st but we will still be at West End.

West End Community Market is open all year.

 David picked October beans twice at Catawba. Next week will probably be the end of them.

fj_101214_catawba3

fj_101214_catawba

left potato area – center tomato area – and right corn area

 

 

 

We sowed winter rye, in stages, after harvesting each crop.

 

fj_101214_catawba2

left sweet potatoes – center green beans – right David picking October beans.

 

 

 

 

 

We still need to cover a few more areas with rye.

———————————————————————————————————————————

Week of  5 October – 11 October 2014

fj_week_of_10514_moon

Besides watching the eclipse this week we went to Catawba twice.  The first day, while David picked the last of the green beans, I pulled up the Roma tomato plants. Late blight wiped them out before they could ripen. While I mowed, David tilled and sowed winter rye in the tomato and green bean rows.

fj_week_of_10514_sweetpot

The second time we went to Catawba, David picked October beans then helped me harvest our sweet potato crop.

 

 

 

 

 

 

fj_week_of_10514_rye

Winter rye sparkling in the morning sun.

At home David picked and tilled under the last of our bush green beans and sowed winter rye. We still have some October, Rattlesnake, and Romano beans to harvest.

 

 

 

 

 

 

fj_week_of_10514_daikon

I pulled up half of my pepper plants; the others will stay until frost, and sowed a mixture of winter rye and daikon radish in this area. The daikon radish had to be planted by the first part of October and will not be harvested. They will be left in place for their life cycle. This will help loosen and aerate the soil. That’s the theory anyways, we’ll see, more to come on this subject.

fj_week_of_10514_daikon2

daikon radish and winter rye seedlings

fj_week_of_19514_soil

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

David mixed several loads of potting soil and filled a number of five gallon pots and our greenhouse growing beds with it.

fj_week_of_10514_soil2

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

David adding sand to our growing bed mix.

fj_week_of_10514_soil3

left side is mixed with perlite – right side with rice hulls

We are testing both to see if there is any difference in their performance. More on this subject later.

 

Weeks of  21 September – 4 October 2014

 

week_of_9282014_peppers

Most of the hot pepper plants were put in the greenhouse.

For the past two weeks we have been cleaning up and preparing our growing areas for their next round of plantings.

David emptied all the eggplants pots into the former tomato patch. Since tomatoes and eggplants are members of the same family we will not plant any of their family members in this area for three years.  After tilling this area we broadcast several different types of old seeds. If they come up we will have some more greens, if not, we will broadcast some winter rye.

Our neighbor gave us a few more bales of hay. David decided to use them in the compost pile. He made a lasagna style layered pile. It started out about seven feet high now it is about three feet high. David is constantly monitoring its temperature. In the morning you can see the water vapor rising.

On Friday Oct. the 3rd we went up to Seven Spring Farm for some supplies, winter rye, perlite, daikon radish, rice hulls and Slugo. We are planning to do a comparison study between the perlite and rice hulls to see which one works best in our potting mix. We will also be testing daikon radish as a winter cover crop, more on these subjects later.

week_of_9282014_con

One of my  “What Not” or  odds and ends patches being worked

 

fj_week_ofsept_oct_old_girl

The latest in farming fashion

 

Shoes by Wetsel

Pants by Lucy

Gloves by Betty

Top by Senior Moment

Hair by Freak of Nature

 

 

 

 

 

Week of  14 September – 20 September  2014

 

At Catawba, this week, besides picking beans and Roma tomatoes we tilled and sowed Winter Rye in the former potato and corn patches.

At home we started a major clean up. David removed the black-eye plants and put the BMSB traps into nearby trees.

fj_week_of9142014_cleanupfj_week_of_9142014_cleanu[2

I planted some brassicas in the old summer squash bed and  removed all the plants and stakes  from the tomato patch.

 

 

 

Week of  7 September – 13 September  2014

 

Because of the beans we went to Catawba three times. David picked while I mowed, cleaned up weeds and took down the electric fence around the former cabbage patch. Except for Friday, while David picked beans, in the pouring rain, I sat in the car reading.

At home David did a lot of yard work, weed eating and clearing brush in preparation for planting more evergreen trees along our border. He also tilled the squash bed and picked more beans.

I weeded and worked in the house.

fj_week_of_972014_tilled

summer squash bed ready for planting

 

Week of  31 August – 6 September  2014

 

When we went to Catawba on Wednesday we found the electric fence off. All of our cabbage, over one hundred plants, had been eaten and our Roma beans had been topped. David had extended the electric fence to specifically protect these areas. Sharing a fence with other growers has its drawbacks. Apparently one of them forgot to turn the fence back on before leaving.

On Friday the fence was working. While David picked beans I cleaned up our second round of corn. David also picked corn from our third rotation.

At home David prepared several beds. He planted green onions and White Lady turnips in two of them and I sowed spinach, kale and mustard seed in the others. David also harvested the acorn squash and cleaned up the summer squash bed.

fj_week_of_31aug2014_turnips

 

fj_week_of_31aug3014_onions

 

 

 

White Lady turnips

 

green onions

fj_week_of_31aug2014_squash

cleaning up the summer squash bed

—————————————————————————————————————————————-

Week of  24 August – 30 August  2014

 

We went to Catawba twice this week. On Wednesday I mowed the grass around our patch and dug more potato. David set out our cabbage seedlings. On Friday David installed a short electric fence around the cabbage area, to keep the critters from devouring the seedlings.

We both dug potatoes; they are all in storage now.

fj_week_of_aug242014_cabbage

David put three BMSB traps in his black-eye pea patch. The bait in the traps is over a year old so David primed each trap with several live bugs. These bugs lure other BMSB to the traps.

The adults are starting to come into the house for the winter. They are greeted with an isopropyl cocktail, alcohol in a jar.

fj_week_of_aug242014_bmsb

David pulled all of the plants from bed C and tilled. When it was finally dry enough, he set out some pea plants in bed C and sowed beet seeds in bed B.

fj_week_of_aug242014_peas

fj_week_of_aug242014_beets

watering beet bed

 

 

 

Week of  17 August – 23 August  2014

 

On Thursday we went to Catawba. David tilled the upper part of the old potato patch, it was just dry enough, in order to plant cabbage seedlings there next week.

Although I dug potatoes the whole time we were there, I still have two more rows to dig. We are concerned that because of all the rain they will start to rot; David will help dig the next time we go.

We did manage to harvest, in the rain, on Tuesday and Friday for our markets. A lot of tomatoes were composted because they were splitting open from absorbing too much water.

All our plans to sow seeds for our fall crops washed away with the frequent downpours.

fj_bed_b_week_of_17aug14_25aug14

 Too muddy to plant.

 

 

 

Week of  10 August – 16 August

 

Gravel is the bane of our existence, along with stink bugs of course.

David has spent a lot of time, over the past 15 years, removing gravel from our growing area. The previous owner spread out a lot of the stuff , covering walkways and drive ways. These accesses do not exist anymore, having been converted to agricultural plots.

When bed B was moved, last season, some more gravel revealed itself. Before David can sow root crops, in this bed, he has to remove it by running shovels of dirt through a screen separating soil from gravel. The soil stays while the gravel is moved out front to our small driveway.

week_of_10aug2014_david

 

 

week_of_10aug2014_david2

The BMSB have managed to destroy David’s black-eye peas. He will leave the plants, for a while, in order to use them as a trap crop, in an attempted to keep these demon stink bugs from spreading to his beans and my tomatoes.

 

Life of a Roma tomato patch

whats_growing_remember3

23 April 2014

——————————————————————————————————————————————

whats_growing_remember

13 Jun 2014

——————————————————————————————————————

time

13 August 2014

————————————————————————————–

week_of_10aug2014_roma

16 August 2014

———————————————————————————————————

Week of  3 August – 9 August

 

Despite the rain Saturday, market was our best this season. Thanks to all who came out in the wet weather to support the vendors at the Grandin Village market.

Weeding and fertilizing were on our agenda for this week. In an effort to keep the harvest going, David weeded and spread Harmony organic fertilizer around all our tomato plants in our main patch.

Because my herb garden was not preforming well I asked David to spread some Harmony on it a few weeks ago. The Galinsoga loved it and took control, over powering my dill.

 

week_of_3aug2014_herb2b

Naturally grown gone a muck!

 

week_of_3aug2014_herb2a

An hour later after pulling up weeds and dill.

 

At Catawba I pulled more potatoes while David weeded wacked and while I mowed he added another line to the electric fence that he put around his bean and sweet potato rows.

week_of_3aug2014_david2

We both weeded around out last rotation of corn.

week_of_3aug2014_david

 

 

 

Week of 27 July – 2 August

 

Fall crops were on our minds this week.  Our Stonehead cabbage seedlings are doing well and we will plant them at Catawba in a few weeks.

week_of_27july2014_cabbage

David started to prepare bed B for fall crops and a just Wright tunnel.  A just Wright tunnel is not a low tunnel nor a high tunnel but just the right size for David’s 6’2” down the middle.

week_of_27july2014_bed_b

We had one little spot in our Main Garden that has been empty this season. David decided to plant some pickling cucumbers and dill in that area.

week_of_27july2014_cukes

Week of 20 July – 26 July

 

David went to the Doctors again Wednesday and received some new medications. The problem he has been experiencing is due to the side effects of his treatments not the cancer. The new meds seem to be helping to regulate his system.

On Monday and Friday we went to Catawba and pulled potatoes and erected a support for the few tomato plants we have there.

We started our clean-up of the Secret Garden. We are still waiting on the Silver King corn to mature .

week_of_20july2014

Because Catawba has been so dry this year and the critters are starting to eat the bean seedlings there, David decided to plant some beans at home.

nnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnn

Week of 13 July – 19 July

 

week_of_jun15catawba2

June 22 2014

week_of_13july2014

July 18 2014

 

On Monday and Friday we went to Catawba and pulled potatoes. While I pulled spuds David worked on a low rise electric fence around our beans and sweet potato patch and he also watered.

nnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnn

The plan was to sow kale in the pepper bed. However, our neighbor, who was cleaning out his barn, gave us several bales of old hay. So David decided to mulch the pepper bed with it. In the fall it will be tilled into the soil.

week_of_13july2014_hay

With a mask on, David spreads hay in the pepper patch.

I also transplanted fall seedlings from germination trays into cell packs. Because of cabbage moths we have to keep these plants covered with row cover until they get bigger. We also pull up all of our heirloom onions.

 

Week of 6 July – 12 July

 

David experienced some complications which were attributed to his last surgery. He was out of commission for the first part of the week. Tuesday and Friday we prepared for our markets. On Thursday we went to Catawba. It was dry as a bone.While I set up some  drip irrigation around the sweet potatoes and pulled up our Red Chieftain and Kennebec potatoes, David tilled up the dust to plant his 5th round of beans.While I planted the beans David till between the corn rows. Before leaving we had to cover the sweet potatoes with row cover because something was eating them.

week_of_6july2014_squash

After David hoed bed A (squash) we had a deluge. Unlike Catawba we are getting too much rain.

Back at home David had a burst of energy and did a lot of hoeing and garden maintenance.

week_of_6july2014_buckwheat

One of 3 Buckwheat plants that did come up,

I had to hoe my sweet peppers because the buckwheat once again failed to germinate. Seed companies should be required to put germ test information on their containers and not just the sell by date. Now I am going to try some kale as a cover in every other row. Stay tuned.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Week of 29th June – 5 July

 

week_of_29jun2014_blackeye

The black-eye peas and the strawberries are working well togeather.

The Best Laid Plans of Mice and Men Last week the plan was to sow the spring onion bed with buckwheat. However, David changed his mind and planted summer squash there instead because he had a tray of plants left over from market. Now the plan is to sow kale as a cover crop in this bed when the summer squash is harvested. The kale will have a dual purpose. Some of it will be harvested for market but most will be incorporated into the soil.

On Wednesday, after another unexpected trip to the doctors, we finally made our annual trek up Bent Mount to Seven Springs Farms to pick up a load of organic growing supplies.

Another Thursday was spent at Catawba. While I mowed and planted sweet potatoes plants, David weed wacked and hoed potatoes.

week_of_29june2014_musicaI planted my second round of Spanish Musica pole beans in pots. I put several in one pot and David ran several strings from the pots up a couple of post that are located close to the house. This arrangement will allow us to encircle these posts with row covers at night to protect the Musicas from nocturnal marauding munchers.

Apr/May/Jun  See Archives

 

nnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnn